AMD's Legacy Driver Will Not Support X Server 1.6
Written by Michael Larabel in AMD on 5 March 2009 at 06:46 PM EST. 56 Comments
Early this morning we shared that AMD is dropping R300 through R500 support in the Catalyst driver. Beginning with the Catalyst 9.4 release, the Windows and Linux drivers will only support the R600 and R700 series (and eventually, R800) of ATI Radeon graphics processors. However, when writing that article we had no official response whether the Catalyst 9.3 legacy driver would support X Server 1.6. We can confirm now, however, that the R300-500 series legacy driver will not support this newest X.Org server release.

Effectively what this means is beginning with the next round of distribution updates (like Ubuntu 9.04 and Fedora 11) you will be unable to use the Catalyst driver. You could selectively downgrade some packages to the X Server 1.5 series, but that may cause other problems and is not something to tell a novice Linux user to carry out. Instead you will need to use the open-source Mesa stack with the xf86-video-ati driver (or the option of xf86-video-radeonhd if using a Radeon X1000 series ASIC).

For those using a Radeon HD 2000/3000/4000 series GPU, it means you will need to wait until at least Catalyst 9.4 in April before seeing X Server 1.6 support.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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